Thought you couldn't start a company during a recession? These enterprises made it big by doing just that.HT: the New York Times' Economix blog.
It might seem counterintuitive to start a new business when the economy is in the dumps. But a recession can actually be the ideal time for launching a company. In fact, many well-known and successful organizations were born during an economic slump.
Why do these companies succeed? Usually it's because the founders recognized a market need and filled it. Identifying that need — whether it’s related to entertainment, travel or even streamlining how businesses operate — is the key to any thriving enterprise, regardless of the economic climate in which it begins. The following major corporations made it big during recessions by doing just that.
Hyatt Corp. opened its first hotel’s doors at the Los Angeles International Airport during the Eisenhower recession (1957 to 1958). The chain rose to worldwide fame in the following decades and now operates more than 365 hotels in 25 countries with premium services such as wifi hotspots.
Burger King Corp., with its flame-broiled burgers, is another recession startup. The company began in 1954 when James McLamore and David Edgerton opened a Burger King restaurant in Miami, Fla. During another recession in 1957, the company introduced its successful signature burger — the Whopper. Today, the company operates more than 11,100 locations in 65 countries.
IHOP Corp. is another star from the Eisenhower recession. The first restaurant in the now national chain opened its doors July1958 in Toluca Lake, Calif. Owners Al and Jerry Lapin were at the helm of the fast growing company, which began franchising just three years later. Today, there are more than 1,300 locations across the U.S.
The Jim Henson Company was created by famed puppeteer Jim Henson in 1958. Henson's business was responsible for some of the best-known puppet characters of all time including Miss Piggy, Kermit the Frog and Elmo. Today, the privately held company is managed by Henson's children and continues to thrive by creating popular kids-friendly shows and movies.
LexisNexis is a research hub for the law, media and more. The company, originally a government contractor, began its LexisNexis computerized legal research service during the 1973 oil crisis that rocked the country into steep economic slump. The now Web-based service is used in 100 countries by individuals in law, government, education and business....And nine more.